Fingal County Council last night unanimously agreed to a Green Party motion for providing allotments throughout the county in proximity to residential communities. The Green motions resulted from the recent closing of waiting lists for allotment due to high demand; 277 people were on the waiting lists when they were closed earlier this year, and the waiting period to get an allotment is over 2 years. The Council also resolved that the waiting list be reopened.
Speaking in relation to the motion, Councillor David Healy (Howth) pointed out that the waiting list had grown from nil in 1999 to 277 in 2006, reflecting a strong demand in Dublin for allotments. “This reflects a growing interest among the public in fresh healthy food, and the fact that many newer houses have small gardens or no gardens.”
Cllr. Healy also emphasised that green belt land such as between Baldoyle and Portmarnock should incorporate allotments on a permanent basis, as part of the green space and parkland provision for adjacent urban areas. These permanent allotments would be in addition to the more traditional temporary allotments on land which the Council is holding in reserve for future use.
Councillors from all parties enthusiastically supported the proposal, suggesting sites in their local areas, and Council management responded positively, promising to identify areas currently let as conacre for temporary allotments and to look at parkland for the provision of permanent allotments. A representative of the South Dublin Allotments Association will be asked to speak to a forthcoming Strategic Policy Committee of the Council.